Apollo 11 moonwalk video restored

 

NASA is to release newly discovered, high quality video of the first men walking on the Moon, they announced today. The movie features 15 key moments as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the lunar surface.

Buzz Aldrin on the Moon

Previous Apollo 11 footage has been blurred and ghostly but the new digitally-enhanced footage is said to be much better.

NASA says it uses “what is believed to be the best available broadcast-format copies of the lunar excursion, some of which had been locked away for nearly 40 years.”

The initial video will be unveiled at a media briefing on Thursday at the Newseum in Washington as part of a comprehensive Apollo 11 moonwalk restoration project expected to be completed by the autumn.

A NASA spokesman had earlier complained of inaccuracies in a UK newspaper report that said lost movies of the Apollo 11 moonwalk had been found in Australia but stopped short of a total denial. The new announcement explains why, although they are not yet saying where the locked-away footage was found.

The news somes as it was also revealed that first man on the Moon Neil Armstrong will miss NASA’s 40th anniversary official celebration of the Apollo 11 landing.

The space agency has lined up six Apollo astronauts for a special news conference in Washington on July 20, the anniversary of the date that the Eagle touched down in the Sea of Tranquillity.

A NASA spokesman said yesterday they will be second man to walk on the Moon Buzz Aldrin, plus Apollo spacemen Jim Lovell, David Scott, Charles Duke, Tom Stafford and Eugene Cernan. It will be broadcast live on NASA TV on the internet.

But Neil Armstrong is noticeable by his absence. The world’s most famous spaceman left NASA two years after his historic moonwalk in 1969 and has kept a low profile ever since, refusing to do interviews.

Insiders say he sees the Apollo project as a triumph for a huge NASA team and dislikes being singled out for prominence.

By contrast, his Moon companion Buzz Aldrin has recently been soaking up the publicity, making a rap video and touring the world to promote his new book about his life after the epic adventure.

Picture: A still shot of Buzz Aldrin was high quality and in colour – unlike the ghostly video images now restored (NASA).

• Discover space for yourself and do fun science with a telescope. Here is Skymania’s advice on how to choose a telescope. We also have a guide to the different types of telescope available.

 

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